About Siyeh Pass Trail
- Trail Highlights – Gorgeous alpine scenery, stunning mountain views, wildflowers, plentiful wildlife
- Roundtrip Length – 9.4 miles
- Elevation Gain – 2,135 feet
- Peak Elevation – 8,000 feet
- Parking Lot — Yes
- Difficulty – Strenuous
- Region – Logan Pass
- Availability of Water – Yes
This is a beautiful high elevation day hike with mind-blowing views of Mt. Siyeh, Going-to-the-Sun Mountain, Matahpi Peak, and St. Mary Lake.
The trail is one of the highest maintained trails in Glacier Park (and my favorite!), reaching an elevation of 8,000 feet. You’ll pass through some breathtaking country, with abundant wildflowers, red and green rock outcroppings, mountain goats, bighorn sheep and grizzlies.
Siyeh Pass is also one of the four passes in Glacier Park where large locomotive bells were placed in the 1920s so hikers could participate in the Swiss custom of bell ringing on high alpine peaks. The bells were removed during World War II, so sorry, you missed your chance to hear them echoing across the vast mountain peaks and valleys!
The Siyeh Bend trailhead is 2.2 miles east of Logan Passon the Going-To-The-Sun Road. You can also start at the Piegan Pass trailhead at Jackson Glacier Overlook, but this is a longer, steeper hike, so we’re going to take the Siyeh Bend route.
The beginning of the trail takes you alongside Siyeh Creek for about 200 yards. At 1.1 miles you’ll arrive at the Piegan Pass Trail. Go left here to stay on the Siyeh Bend Trail.
You’ll pass through dense forest along this part of the hike which limits the scenery, but don’t despair; you’ll be rewarded later with some spectacular vistas.
The trail opens up a bit as you near the Siyeh Pass Trail junction, which is 2.4 miles from the trailhead. Turn right at this juncture onto the Siyeh Pass Trail.
Another .2 miles and you’ll emerge from the forest into the vast open expanse of Preston Park. It’s a breathtaking valley carved out by glaciers, with lush alpine meadows strewn with wildflowers in summer. It’s a gorgeous spot and is a destination in itself. It’s also a prime grizzly bear habitat so be sure to take the proper precautions, which include making a lot of noise and carrying pepper spray (learn how to prevent a grizzly bear attack, in case you bump into one). Remember that grizzlies would just as soon avoid humans. Making noise alerts them to your approach so they can move out of the way.
The Beginning Section of Siyeh Pass Trail
Further up the trail, you’ll witness the impressive sight of Matahpi Peak looming at an elevation of 9365 feet toward the south. You’ll also see Piegan Mountain to the west and Heavy Runner Mountain to the southwest.
You’ll be able to spot your destination, Siyeh Pass, on the saddle between Matahpi Peak and Mount Siyeh to the north, which is one of the highest passes in Glacier National Park.
At 3.2 miles, the trail crosses Siyeh Creek and begins its ascent to Siyeh Pass. The next mile or so is the most strenuous stretch of the hike as you ascend 700 feet over a series of switchbacks to the saddle that cradles Siyeh Pass.
It can be tough going if you’re not in great shape, but it’s well worth the trek. Once you get there, you’ll be rewarded with a mind-blowing panorama of Siyeh Peak, Goat Mountain to the east and the Boulder Creek drainage to the northeast.
Congratulations, you’ve arrived at one of the most spectacular spots in Glacier National Park!
If you want to return via the Baring Creek Valley to Sunrift Gorge at Going-to-the-Sun Road, this is a spectacular hike that I highly recommend.
The route is slightly longer at 5.6 miles (instead of 4.7 returning the way you came), but it’s all downhill so it’s a bit easier. Just continue on the Siyeh Pass Trail as it descends sharply, switchbacking down the mountain over 3,400 feet to Sunrift Gorge.
You’ll pass Sexton Glacier and parallel Baring Creek as it cascades down gorgeous red and green rock formations along the way. This route is a favorite grizzly hangout, especially in August when the berries are ripe, so be sure to loudly make your presence known along the trail so they can move out of the way.
Once you get to Going-to-the-Sun Road, you can take the shuttle to your vehicle at the Siyeh Bend trailhead (or just hitchhike, which is my favorite form of transportation through the park!)
Siyeh Pass Elevation Profile
Additional Siyeh Pass Photos
Additional Glacier National Park Hiking Info
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